May Women Thrive as Tantrics!
The past of buddhism is maledominated. All major religions that have emerged during the past roughly 2000 years have been maledominated, and still remain so. Maybe this is because this has been necessary in the past. Maybe this is because otherwise teachings – dharma – wouldn't have taken ground. If we started talking about the many problems of maledominated religions, that would be a long conversation. Without doubt we would feel bad about many issues, wrongdoings and mispresentations done and imposed by religious men. That is highly unfortunate. Personally, I feel sorry for the fact that equality between sexes didn't exist in the past and in many ways still doesn't exist today. However, I also see some positive light coming up in the horizon.
Over the last roughly 100 years, dharma has been brought to the West. Here in the West, we have a very different kind of history and traditions, also in regards to gender equality. I think that in this setting women can begin to flourish as dharma practitioners and realized masters. According to my father,
“The basis for realizing enlightenment is a human body. Male or female–there is no great difference. But if she develops the mind bent on enlightenment, to be a woman is better.” -Guru Padmasambhava
I think that women have an ability to understand tantra better than men. In general, women are more intuitive in their use of the body and mind. They also might have more sensitivity than men. Also, the fact that they are embodiments of the feminine principle, puts women closer to full buddhahood known as rainbow body, if we look at female constitution alone, and I think this is what Guru Rinpoche is referring to in his quote. This is a somewhat artificial categorisation but I think these things are true.
I hope that dharma takes root and becomes authentic in the West. I hope that women empower themselves through the practices available to them which wasn't at all the case in the history of buddhism. I hope that Western women especially take up the practice of tantra because vajrayana suits them better than sutrayana. That is the way to truly empower women.
Personally I hope that I can give many of my female students dharma transmission so that they can become representatives and embody the teachings of Pemako Buddhism for the benefit of all sentient beings. I wish that these authorized female teachers, can show an example and encourage other women to become true practitioners who aim for full enlightenment. Looking at our sangha and sensing into the future, I feel that the future is bright in this regard.
May women thrive as tantric yoginis!
May women fully embody our original state free of confusion, full of love!
May women of this world become buddhas!
May women become fully realised masters who lead sentient beings out of samsara!
Ho! May true dharma spread in all directions!
I bow to my guru father, Guru Rinpoche,
and join the smile of my guru mother, Yeshe Tsogyal,
Kim Katami, 6.10.2020
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